A First Look: Value Picks from Rhapsodio, TP Audio, Astrotec and BGVP


BGVP has been one of the community’s most recent head-turners, offering IEMs with high driver counts at tantalisingly low prices. Their DM6 in-ear monitors were a runaway hit amongst head-fi’ers across the globe, and they’ve now come out with its successor: The DM7 – armed with six balanced armatures per side and a clear, light and yet smooth sound.

Technical Specifications

  • Driver count: Six balanced-armature drivers
  • Impedance: 13.5Ω @ 1kHz
  • Sensitivity: 115dB @ 1mW
  • Key feature(s) (if any): N/A
  • Available form factor(s): Universal acrylic IEMs
  • Price: $299
  • Website: www.bgvp-hifi.com; www.linsoul.com

Sound Impressions

BGVP’s DM7 is a lively, well-balanced in-ear monitor that draws its energy from the upper-mids and low-treble; a bright-sounding monitor that nevertheless remains smooth due to an absence of peaks past 10kHz. As a result, its transient response isn’t necessarily the sharpest, nor is its timbre overtly crisp. But, on the other hand, it allows its vibrance and energy to exist without overtly irking those who may prefer their cymbals smooth and feathered. In conjunction with a slightly more neutral bass response, the DM7 comes across airy, open and clean with lots of air between its images. So, if your ideal sig is open and clear with smoothness intact, and you don’t mind a slightly brighter tone, the DM7 is for you.

The DM7’s bass response as a whole sits behind its upper-registers, which gives it its spacey soundscape. But, it hovers above neutral too, which adds a necessary contrast to the top-end and prevents the DM7 from ever sounding hollow or anaemic. The low-end is tilted toward the mid-bass for punch and warmth, but they extend very nicely into the subs for palpable rumble as well. Now, it still has all the nimbleness of a balanced armature, so it won’t quite shake like a DD can. But, this benefits the lows in terms of clarity and headroom; sounding clean, refined and open at all times. The region then dips as it enters the upper-bass and low-mids, so it’s a tight bass that’s more rhythmic than it is melodic or warm.

The DM7’s midrange is vibrant and light with an emphasis on the upper-mids. Instruments have a reediness that doesn’t come across entirely accurate. But, they do have a vibrance to them that never ceases to sound musical. Fortunately too, BGVP have tempered the mids to sound neither too thin nor honky. So, despite the slightly coloured tone, instruments still maintain a sense of realism. In addition, the DM7 also possesses fair headroom and imaging precision. Instruments breathe effortlessly despite the energy they bring, and they’re positioned pretty accurately too. While resolution leaves something to be desired, decent stereo separation and stability sells a sufficiently convincing surround sound experience.

Up top, BGVP’s DM7 boasts both clarity and smoothness; a colouration that may not have worked on its own, but fares surprisingly well with the rest of the DM7’s frequency response. While bright and clean signatures typically come with a crisp, hard-edged treble response, the DM7’s upper registers instead possess a smooth, rounded and full-bodied timbre. Cymbals, hi-hats and snare drums have a modesty to them that dares not pierce, etch or crackle. Treble-heads may find it lacking, but those who want their clarity smooth too will find this mighty appealing. While it isn’t the most transparent in the world, how well it balances against both itself and the rest of the DM7 makes it a successful top-end in my book.

Page 1: Rhapsodio Orla
Page 2: TP Audio Aurora
Page 3: Astrotec Lyra Nature
Page 4: BGVP DM7





Church-boy by day and audio-obsessee by night, Daniel Lesmana’s world revolves around the rhythms and melodies we lovingly call: Music. When he’s not behind a console mixing live for a congregation of thousands, engineering records in a studio environment, or making noise behind a drum set, you’ll find him on his laptop analysing audio gear with fervor and glee. Now a specialist in custom IEMs, cables and full-sized headphones, he’s looking to bring his unique sensibilities - as both an enthusiast and a professional - into the reviewer’s space; a place where no man has gone before.


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